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Can germplasm resources be used to increase the ascorbic acid content of stored potatoes?

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Freshly harvested potato tubers contain up to 50 mg/100g ascorbic acid (AA), but levels decline rapidly during cold storage. Genetic alterations to boost the AA content of stored tubers would contribute to human nutrition and might improve tuber resistance to oxidative damage during chilling. While studying the breeding potential ofSolanum phureja germplasm, we identified a 24-chromosome Phureja-haploid Tuberosum hybrid (clone I, USW5295.7) that retained a twofold higher content of tuber AA than neighboring clones after storage at 5 C. Clone I produces 2n-pollen through a mechanism genetically equivalent to first-division restitution (FDR), which transmits much of the nonadditive genetic variance for tuber yield. We now report a survey of clone I progeny showing significant family and ploidy effects on tuber AA levels during cold storage, consistent with the transmission of information for higher AA by FDR 2n-pollen. These results encourage further study of 2n-gametes and wild species germplasm to breed for increased tuber AA.

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Correspondence to Corinne S. Davies or Michael J. Ottman or Stanley J. Peloquin.

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Davies, C.S., Ottman, M.J. & Peloquin, S.J. Can germplasm resources be used to increase the ascorbic acid content of stored potatoes?. Amer J of Potato Res 79, 295–299 (2002). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02986362

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Additional Key Words

  • Maturity
  • ploidy
  • Solanum tuberosum
  • 2n-gametes